Classic Easter Bread

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Ingredients

  • 13 cups flour
  • 4 teaspoons salt
  • 2 cups milk
  • 12 eggs
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 4 pkgs dry yeast
  • 8 TB butter
  • 6 teaspoons anise seeds
  • Raw eggs for decorating
  • Food coloring

Directions

  1. Measure flour on waxed paper. Combine 2 cups of flour with sugar, salt and yeast.
  2. Combine milk and butter in saucepan and warm. (Make sure milk and butter mixture are not too hot before adding to the yeast.) Add anise seeds to warmed milk and butter mixture. this allows the oil and aroma of the seeds to come out.
  3. Add to dry ingredients. Beat one minute on medium speed. Add eggs and additional flour -- enough to make a thick dough. Beat at high speed. Stir in remaining flour until a soft dough forms. Shape into a ball and put dough into a bowl sprayed with Pam or lightly greased. Let rise.
  4. After the dough doubles in size, punch down. this recipe should make 4 loaves of bread. It can be made into any shape.
  5. To make a braid, cut three equal pieces of a portion of the dough and roll into logs about 16-18" long. Braid and form into ring. Let rise again until double in size.
  6. Mix one egg yolk, 2 TB of water and 1 tsp of sugar and brush the top of the bread.
  7. Bake at 350° for about 15-25 minutes depending on how large your loaves are.

Tips/Techniques

TO DECORATE: Color as many raw eggs as you wish using food coloring only. After the dough is braided, cut slits in dough and place egg in slits. Uncolored eggs may also be used. The egg will cook during the baking process.
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